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Old 04-13-09, 08:47 AM   #1
timmyquest
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IT Folks: What would cause this?

We don't have an IT person at my office and as the defacto IT guy it's increasingly becoming my job to fix everyone's problems.

Last Friday a few girls computer's weren't able to connect to the internet or the network. I left early but the moans came first thing this morning. I investigated a bit and it turns out that the DHCP server wasn't assigning IP's correctly.

I checked the hardware as much as i could. We have a big router that dishes out the network to each computer individually with the exception of one 4 port switch. Here the line runs to one unused computer (i'm not sure if that was out or not) one used computer, and a WAP.

The computer connected directly to the switch and the computer that utilizes the WAP weren't getting their IP's. I fixed the problem by manually assigning them but i see this more as a temporary fix. As far as i know, that switch gets it's data right from the router, just like all the other computers in the office which are working fine. So why would those coming from the switch suddenly not be receiving IP's?
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Old 04-13-09, 09:54 AM   #2
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We don't have an IT person at my office and as the defacto IT guy it's increasingly becoming my job to fix everyone's problems.

Last Friday a few girls computer's weren't able to connect to the internet or the network. I left early but the moans came first thing this morning. I investigated a bit and it turns out that the DHCP server wasn't assigning IP's correctly.

I checked the hardware as much as i could. We have a big router that dishes out the network to each computer individually with the exception of one 4 port switch. Here the line runs to one unused computer (i'm not sure if that was out or not) one used computer, and a WAP.

The computer connected directly to the switch and the computer that utilizes the WAP weren't getting their IP's. I fixed the problem by manually assigning them but i see this more as a temporary fix. As far as i know, that switch gets it's data right from the router, just like all the other computers in the office which are working fine. So why would those coming from the switch suddenly not be receiving IP's?
To get to the root of the problem, you have to learn to ask the correct question:

"How do I ask for a raise to maximize the possibility of me actually receiving one?"
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Old 04-13-09, 10:09 AM   #3
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Were these computer receiving their IP addresses before? Has the configuration on the DHCP server changed? Has the configuration on the switch changed?

Is the WAP *just* a WAP, or is a workgroup router? Is it acting as a rogue DHCP server? I
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Old 04-13-09, 10:11 AM   #4
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he has a point,


I would start by powercycling everything, and checking my cabling. If there is an unused computer, i woulf find out why it is unused, that may be part of our problem, people dont use things that don't work, and it may not be a new issue. Then I would go back to trying to let the router assign everything manually, see what it does,
and ask for a raise before i fix anything else.
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Old 04-13-09, 10:24 AM   #5
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tjwarren might be onto something if the WAP is actually a wireless router as well. What IP address does the computer have when it looses internet and network connectivity? 10 or 168 starting for internal private networks or 169 for auto assigned.

You could also go into your main router and try clearing out the assigned DHCP table and try doing an "ipconfig /renew all" from the command prompt (assuming you are on XP) at one of the machines and see if it requests a new IP and shows up in the routers DHCP table. (As I understand from your post that your DHCP server is being handled by the router and not software like Windows Server)

If worse comes to worse and you really want to see download wireshark http://www.wireshark.org

install that on your machine. Plug yourself into the affected switch. Run the software, start a capture and then try to request an IP address. Let it run for a few minutes and then stop the capture. Sort the capture by DHCP packets and you can see where the request is going and if any are coming back who is giving it out.

Might help you solve something. If you need any more help feel free to PM
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Old 04-13-09, 12:15 PM   #6
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The WAP is nothing but a WAp.

Another problem that i didn't realize was going on because no one had tried up to that point is that we couldn't access our server. I turned off all the PC's in the office, and reset the router, modem, switch, and WAP.

Reboot the server and all the other network hardware and now the files on our server are accessible so i'm thinking that the DHCP should work again. Oddly though, i went to check on all the other PC's and those all have static IP's. Not sure which is a better solution...
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Old 04-13-09, 12:16 PM   #7
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To get to the root of the problem, you have to learn to ask the correct question:

"How do I ask for a raise to maximize the possibility of me actually receiving one?"
Just under 6 months here...i'm not asking for a raise just yet
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Old 04-13-09, 12:18 PM   #8
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I'm thinking that a rogue band of electrons decided to revolt.
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Old 04-13-09, 12:20 PM   #9
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I'm thinking that a rogue band of electrons decided to revolt.
Tax day is coming...
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Old 04-13-09, 12:31 PM   #10
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So right now none of the computers are using dynamic addresses? Everything is static? Because the ones that had problems you changed to static, and everything else turned out to already be static?

Maybe you just need to configure your DHCP service; perhaps it wasn't done properly to begin with. What address scheme is it handing out?
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Old 04-13-09, 01:40 PM   #11
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We don't have an IT person at my office and as the defacto IT guy it's increasingly becoming my job to fix everyone's problems.
Fix this.

We like to have jobs, not be free internet technical support. Thanks. ^____^
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Old 04-13-09, 02:33 PM   #12
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Install wireshark on a laptop if you have one and start sniffing out the packets.
If you have two DHCP servers and you see two identical DHCP offers coming in and they are accepted by your client, you're golden.
I had problems with getting an IP when the DHCP server who was responsible for the wireless DHCP addresses was actually sending offers on the wired Ethernet which it should never have.

www.wireshark.org is your friend.

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Old 04-14-09, 09:35 AM   #13
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Just under 6 months here...i'm not asking for a raise just yet
Well on your way to making yourself invaluable. Make sure you have a log of dates, etc. so when you do go for the raise, you can back up why.
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Old 04-14-09, 09:39 AM   #14
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Well on your way to making yourself invaluable. Make sure you have a log of dates, etc. so when you do go for the raise, you can back up why.
That's a good point...
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Old 04-14-09, 10:37 PM   #15
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There is no such thing as an IT guy that fixes everybody else's problems anymore. There use to be, it was called the Mighty Technician. But that doesn't exist anymore. See, now companies get their PCs from Dell with warranty and "flash" them all with pretty much the same image. When something is wrong, you flash it again to see see if it was software. If the problem persist, must be hardware ergo send it to Dell and in the meantime give another PC (called a "loaner" in IT lingo) to the user.

No need for the A+ certified tech anymore.

About the problem at hand, it seems to me that there's a lot of NAT'ing going on... but can't say, many variables at hand.
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Old 04-21-09, 12:22 PM   #16
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Today we add Copy Repairman to my description. Does it ever end?
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Old 04-21-09, 01:08 PM   #17
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^ 16 - No it doesn't! Get used to it Help Desk!
^ 15 - No that is lazy, also called Help Desk.

What is your DHCP server? Static IP Addresses are better for servers and printers, basically, items you don't want to have the address changed on them. Based on info provided, you might have a bad switch or bad port on the switch.
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